Compost

Backyard Compost Unit Truckload Sale!

Join the waiting list for the Spring 2023 sale!  Pick up occurs at our Spring Recycle Fest each April.

Update on Bethlehem's Food Scraps Composting Project:



We are proud to be the largest compost facility in the Capital Region, and the only municipal facility currently composting food scraps (as of April 2022)!

  • We are working in partnership with the local private hauler FoodScraps360.  They provide a subscription curbside hauling service to residents, schools and businesses in our community to pick up food scraps, and we have partnered to create "Full Circle" compost from blended food scraps and yard waste right in Town.
  • In the near future, we hope to establish one or more “drop spots” where residents can drop off food scraps for composting.  But we don’t have that option set up yet.
  • In April 2022 we completed and launched the first of several “Aerated Static Pile” zones.  This system uses perforated pipes and blower motors on a timer to force air into the base of the compost piles which greatly accelerates the compost process - often reducing our old method which took about 9 months down to about 90 days!

Food Scraps Composting – It’s easier than you may think!

  1. Food scraps can be composted in your own back yard (see info below),

    or

  2. You can have your food scraps and compostable paper/cardboard collected curbside through a service provided by FoodScraps360.
curbside and backyard composting
Backyard Composting resources:

  • The Town of Bethlehem holds annual backyard composter and rain barrel truckload sales at 30-50% off the retail cost.  See the top of the page for more details on the current sale.
  • Kiss the Ground video  This 6 minute video does a GREAT job of sharing the science and benefits of food scraps composting in easy-to-understand ways, and is a great trailer for the full-length documentary film which we highly recommend (available on Netflix, Vimeo and other services).
  • Comprehensive Home Composting Guide by Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE).
  • Compost Bins:  There are a number of types of compost units you can purchase; try a web search for “compost bins” to get started.  We recommend the Earth Machine as one unit that works well; that product is offered at our annual truckload sale.

    Make your own: You can also make them simply and inexpensively with a ring of wire fence (here are instructions), or a plastic trash can (short video shows how), or old pallets (short video shows how)
  • Questions?  Contact the Town Recycling Coordinator for more info.  Email:  recycle@townofbethlehem.org or phone: 518-439-4955 ext. 1510.

‘Vermicomposting’ or ‘Vermiculture’ Resources
(Vermicomposting is indoor composting with special ‘Red Wiggler’ composting worms)



Why compost?

  • Composting is the most ecological and environmentally efficient way of handling food scraps.
  • Food scraps composting is one easy and important way for everyone to help address climate change.  Food scraps trashed in the landfill produce methane, a powerful greenhouse gas up to 60 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2)!
  • Compost
    • enriches the soil
    • saves water
    • holds soil moisture, helping prevent erosion
    • supports healthier plant growth
    • suppresses weeds
    • reduces the need for chemical fertilizers
    • helps plants drawn down atmospheric carbon dioxide
    • and offers a other benefits.

Bethlehem Food Waste Composting in the News: